Key to success, sense of compassion and mission
success goes beyond achieving something for oneself because unless success
results in contributing meaningfully to the society, it would amount to very
This was observed by IAS topper Dr Shah Faesal from Kashmir who was at the
Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra today to attend an interaction session with
school and college students organized by the Regional Institute of Science
and Technology, an engineering college run by ERD Foundation.
Dr Faesal who scripted a success story in the face of heavy odds, said that
passion was the key to success but that would not be complete without a
sense of ‘compassion and mission’ – more so in the context of India which
was grappling with the scourge of all-pervasive poverty, squalor and
“Every success story begins with a dream and you need to put in that extra
effort to realize the dream. Have belief in your abilities, and nothing will
be impossible for you…getting into the IAS or even topping it is not such a
big deal. I would like to urge all of you to think even bigger – like
becoming a top scientist or a litterateur, a world-class athlete, or a Nobel
Laureate,” Dr Faesal said.
The 27-year-old IAS topper felt that to get into the coveted IAS, hard work
and perseverance were critical. “Money should not be a constraint if the
will is there. Two of my friends from extremely humble backgrounds have made
it to the IAS along with me,” he said, adding that one years’ preparation
was enough for IAS exams.
Dr Faesal who hails from a remote area of Kupwara district in Kashmir and
whose father was a victim of insurgency, feels that the tendency of the
youth to be influenced by any philosophy without questioning its worth had
been one of the causes of militancy.
“From my personal interaction, I have found out that they are misguided
youths with a vague idea of what they are doing. My advice to you is ‘do not
accept anything – any ideology — without questioning,’” he said.
An MBBS graduate, Dr Faesal said that he opted for IAS as it gives a chance
to serve the people and at the same time to be in the decision-making
According to Dr Faesal, the biggest challenges confronting the nation were
poverty and lack of access to health care and education besides corruption.
“Poverty and hunger constitute the biggest challenge, and together with
widespread corruption they form a vicious cycle. As an administrator, my
priority would be to tackle these two scourges. I will work for integration,
peace, development and communal harmony,” he said.
Answering queries from eager students, Dr Faesal said that for cleansing the
system, it was imperative that good people must come to the system. “The
system needs committed people who cannot sell their conscience, and they
have to be young men and women from amongst you. If you are to set things in
order you must be prepared to swim against the current,” he said.